Republic of Maldives

  • ދިވެހިރާއްޖޭގެ ޖުމްހޫރިއްޔާ (Dhivehi)
  • Dhivehi Raajjeyge Jumhooriyyaa
Anthem: Qaumii salaam
National Salute
Location of Maldives in the Indian Ocean
Location of Maldives in the Indian Ocean
Location of Maldives
Official languagesEnglish · Dhivehi
Ethnic groups
≈100% Maldiviansa[1][2][3]
Islam (mandated by law)
GovernmentUnitary presidential republic
• President
Ibrahim Mohamed Solih[4]
Faisal Naseem
Mohamed Nasheed[5]
Ahmed Abdulla Didi
LegislaturePeople's Majlis
• from the United Kingdom
26 July 1965
7 August 2008
• Total
298[6] km2 (115 sq mi) (187th)
• 2016 estimate
427,756[7] (175th)
• 2014 census
• Density
1,102.5/km2 (2,855.5/sq mi) (11th)
GDP (PPP)2018 estimate
• Total
$7.396 billion[9] (162nd)
• Per capita
$20,228[9] (69th)
GDP (nominal)2018 estimate
• Total
$4.825 billion[9]
• Per capita
Gini (2005–2013)37.4[10]
medium · 76th (CIA)
HDI (2017)Increase 0.717[11]
high · 101st
CurrencyMaldivian rufiyaa (MVR)
Time zoneUTC+5 (Maldives Time)
Date formatdd/mm/yy
Driving sideleft
Calling code+960
ISO 3166 codeMV
  1. Excluding foreign nationals

The Maldives (z/, US: z/ (About this soundlisten); Dhivehi: ދިވެހިރާއްޖެ Dhivehi Raajje), officially the Republic of Maldives, is a small country in South Asia, located in the Arabian Sea of the Indian Ocean. It lies southwest of Sri Lanka and India, about 1,000 kilometres (620 mi) from the Asian continent. The chain of 26 atolls stretches from Ihavandhippolhu Atoll in the north to Addu Atoll in the south. Comprising a territory spanning roughly 298 square kilometres (115 sq mi), the Maldives is one of the world's most geographically dispersed sovereign states as well as the smallest Asian country by land area and population, with around 427,756 inhabitants. Malé is the capital and the most populated city, traditionally called the "King's Island" for its central location.

The Maldives archipelago is located on the Chagos-Laccadive Ridge, a vast submarine mountain range in the Indian Ocean, which also forms a terrestrial ecoregion, together with the Chagos Archipelago and Lakshadweep.[12] With an average ground-level elevation of 1.5 metres (4 ft 11 in) above sea level,[13] it is the world's lowest country, with even its highest natural point being one of the lowest in the world, at 5.1 metres (17 ft).[13] Due to the consequent risks posed by rising sea levels, the government pledged in 2009 to make the Maldives a carbon-neutral country by 2019.[14][needs update]

Islam was introduced to the Maldivian archipelago in the 12th century which was consolidated as a sultanate, developing strong commercial and cultural ties with Asia and Africa. From the mid-16th-century, the region came under the increasing influence of European colonial powers, with the Maldives becoming a British protectorate in 1887. Independence from the United Kingdom was granted in 1965 and a presidential republic was established in 1968 with an elected People's Majlis. The ensuing decades have been characterised by political instability, efforts at democratic reform,[15] and environmental challenges posed by climate change.[16]

The Maldives is a founding member of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC). It is also a member of the United Nations, the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, and the Non Aligned Movement. The World Bank classifies the Maldives as having an upper middle income economy.[17] Fishing has historically been the dominant economic activity, and remains the largest sector by far, followed by the rapidly growing tourism industry. Maldives is rated "high" on the Human Development Index,[11] with its per capita income significantly higher than other SAARC nations.[18]

The Maldives was a Commonwealth republic from July 1982 until its withdrawal from the Commonwealth in October 2016 in protest of international criticism of its records in relation to corruption and human rights.


The name "Maldives" may derive from the Tamil words maalai (garland / evening) and theevu (island),.[19][20] The Maldivian people are called Dhivehin. The word theevu (archaic heevu, related to Tamil தீவு, dheevu) means "island", and Dhives (Dhivehin) means "islanders" (i.e., Maldivians).[citation needed]

Jan S Hogendorn, Grossman Professor of Economics, theorises that the name Maldives derives from the Sanskrit mālādvīpa (मालाद्वीप), meaning "garland of islands".[19] In Tamil, "Garland of Islands" can be translated as Malai Theevu (மாலைத்தீவு).[21] In Malayalam, "Garland of Islands" can be translated as Maladweepu (മാലദ്വീപ്). In Kannada, "Garland of Islands" can be translated as Maaledweepa (ಮಾಲೆದ್ವೀಪ). None of these names is mentioned in any literature, but classical Sanskrit texts dating back to the Vedic period mention the "Hundred Thousand Islands" (Lakshadweepa), a generic name which would include not only the Maldives, but also the Laccadives, Aminidivi Islands, Minicoy, and the Chagos island groups.[22]

Some medieval travellers such as Ibn Battuta called the islands Mahal Dibiyat (محل دبيأت) from the Arabic word mahal ("palace"), which must be how the Berber traveller interpreted the local name, having been through Muslim North India, where Perso-Arabic words were introduced to the local vocabulary.[23] This is the name currently inscribed on the scroll in the Maldive state emblem. The classical Persian/Arabic name for Maldives is Dibajat.[24][25] The Dutch referred to the islands as the Maldivische Eilanden (pronounced [mɑlˈdivisə ˈʔɛilɑndə(n)]), while the British anglicised the local name for the islands first to the "Maldive Islands" and later to "Maldives".

Garcia da Orta writes in his conversational book[26] first published in 1563 as follows: "I must tell you that I have heard it said that the natives do not call it Maldiva but Nalediva. In the Malabar language nale means four and diva island. So that in that language the word signifies "four islands," while we, corrupting the name, call it Maldiva."

Other Languages
Acèh: Maladèwa
Afrikaans: Maledive
Alemannisch: Malediven
አማርኛ: ማልዲቭስ
Ænglisc: Maldifīega
العربية: المالديف
aragonés: Maldivas
arpetan: Maldives
অসমীয়া: মালদ্বীপ
asturianu: Maldives
Avañe'ẽ: Mayndíva
azərbaycanca: Maldiv adaları
تۆرکجه: مالدیو
বাংলা: মালদ্বীপ
Bahasa Banjar: Maladewa
Bân-lâm-gú: Maldives
беларуская: Мальдывы
беларуская (тарашкевіца)‎: Мальдыўскія астравы
भोजपुरी: मालदीव
Bikol Central: Maldibas
български: Малдиви
Boarisch: Maledivn
བོད་ཡིག: མལ་དི་ཝེསུ།
bosanski: Maldivi
brezhoneg: Maldivez
буряад: Мальдива
català: Maldives
Cebuano: Maldives
čeština: Maledivy
Chavacano de Zamboanga: Maldivas
chiShona: Maldives
chiTumbuka: Maldives
Cymraeg: Maldives
dansk: Maldiverne
davvisámegiella: Malediivvat
Deutsch: Malediven
ދިވެހިބަސް: ދިވެހިރާއްޖެ
dolnoserbski: Malediwy
डोटेली: मालदिभ्स
eesti: Maldiivid
Ελληνικά: Μαλδίβες
español: Maldivas
Esperanto: Maldivoj
estremeñu: Maldivas
euskara: Maldivak
فارسی: مالدیو
Fiji Hindi: Maldives
føroyskt: Maldivoyggjar
français: Maldives
Frysk: Maldiven
Gagauz: Maldivler
galego: Maldivas
ગુજરાતી: માલદીવ્સ
गोंयची कोंकणी / Gõychi Konknni: मालदीव
客家語/Hak-kâ-ngî: Maldives
한국어: 몰디브
Hausa: Maldives
Hawaiʻi: Maladiwa
հայերեն: Մալդիվներ
हिन्दी: मालदीव
hornjoserbsce: Malediwy
hrvatski: Maldivi
Ido: Maldivi
Ilokano: Maldibas
বিষ্ণুপ্রিয়া মণিপুরী: মালদ্বীপ
Bahasa Indonesia: Maladewa
interlingua: Maldives
Interlingue: Maldives
íslenska: Maldíveyjar
italiano: Maldive
Jawa: Maladéwa
Kabɩyɛ: Maldivii
Kapampangan: Maldivas
kaszëbsczi: Malediwë
kernowek: Maldivys
Kinyarwanda: Malidivezi
Kiswahili: Maldivi
Kongo: Maldives
Kreyòl ayisyen: Maldiv
kurdî: Maldîv
Кыргызча: Мальдив
latviešu: Maldīvija
Lëtzebuergesch: Maldiven
лезги: Мальдивар
lietuvių: Maldyvai
Ligure: Maldive
Limburgs: Maledive
lingála: Madívi
Lingua Franca Nova: Maldives
Livvinkarjala: Maldiivat
lumbaart: Maldive
मैथिली: माल्दिभ्स
македонски: Малдиви
Malagasy: Maldiva
മലയാളം: മാലിദ്വീപ്
Malti: Maldive
मराठी: मालदीव
مصرى: مالديف
مازِرونی: مالدیو
Bahasa Melayu: Maldives
Mìng-dĕ̤ng-ngṳ̄: Maldives
монгол: Мальдив
Nāhuatl: Maldivas
Dorerin Naoero: Mardib
Nederlands: Maldiven
नेपाली: मालदिभ्स
日本語: モルディブ
нохчийн: Мальдиваш
Nordfriisk: Maledive
Norfuk / Pitkern: Maldiwes
norsk: Maldivene
norsk nynorsk: Maldivane
Novial: Maldives
occitan: Maldivas
ଓଡ଼ିଆ: ମାଳଦ୍ଵୀପ
Oromoo: Maaldivsi
oʻzbekcha/ўзбекча: Maldiv Respublikasi
ਪੰਜਾਬੀ: ਮਾਲਦੀਵ
पालि: मालदीव
پنجابی: مالدیپ
Papiamentu: Maldivas
پښتو: مالدیف
Patois: Maldaivz
Picard: Maldives
Piemontèis: Maldive
Tok Pisin: Maldives
Plattdüütsch: Malediven
polski: Malediwy
português: Maldivas
Qaraqalpaqsha: Maldiv atawları
qırımtatarca: Maldivler
română: Maldive
Runa Simi: Maldiwakuna
русиньскый: Малдивы
русский: Мальдивы
саха тыла: Мальдивтар
ᱥᱟᱱᱛᱟᱲᱤ: ᱢᱟᱞᱫᱤᱯ
संस्कृतम्: मालाद्वीपः
Scots: Maldives
shqip: Maldivet
sicilianu: Maldivi
Simple English: Maldives
سنڌي: مالديپ
slovenčina: Maldivy
slovenščina: Maldivi
ślůnski: Malediwy
Soomaaliga: Jasiirada Maldiif
کوردی: مالدیڤ
Sranantongo: Maldivikondre
српски / srpski: Малдиви
srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: Maldivi
Basa Sunda: Maladéwa
suomi: Malediivit
svenska: Maldiverna
Tagalog: Maldives
Taqbaylit: Imeldiwen
татарча/tatarça: Мальдивлар
తెలుగు: మాల్దీవులు
tetun: Maldivas
тоҷикӣ: Малдив
Türkçe: Maldivler
Türkmençe: Maldiwler
удмурт: Мальдив
українська: Мальдіви
اردو: مالدیپ
ئۇيغۇرچە / Uyghurche: مالدىۋ
Vahcuengh: Maldives
vepsän kel’: Mal'divan Sared
Tiếng Việt: Maldives
Volapük: Maldivuäns
文言: 馬爾地夫
Winaray: Maldivas
Wolof: Maldiif
吴语: 马尔代芙
ייִדיש: מאלדיוון
Yorùbá: Àwọn Maldive
粵語: 馬爾代夫
Zazaki: Maldiwi
žemaitėška: Maldīvā
中文: 马尔代夫